June 27, 2011, 10:21 AM —
I have about ten years experience working as a project manager. Is it worthwhile for me to get my PMP certification or have I worked long enough that I don’t really need it?
I’m a strong believer in professional certifications. I think they show professional commitment, a specified level of knowledge, and a presumption of technical expertise.
Regarding your question of is a PMP right for you, it depends what you want to do professionally long term. Getting a PMP is a big investment in both time and money. If you feel that project management has been a good stepping stone for you and you are ready to move on, then no, it may not be worth your while. That said, if you want to be a project manager long term, then yes, it can have incredible value to you.
The PMP is a great certification and carries with it a high level of prestige within the project management and Information Technology (IT) community. I would also say that a PMP is highly respected within non-IT communities where strong project management skills are required.
If you plan on a long term career as a project manager, then yes, even with your level of experience, I would suggest getting your PMP. I say this for the following reasons.
- Will expose you to mainstream thinking on project management standards, techniques, best practices, and current trends
- You will learn great new tricks and techniques to assist you in your project management activities
- When hiring, many companies are now giving preference to project managers that are PMP certified
- It’s a formalized display of your professional ability
- If working for a consulting firm, your PMP credential may help your company win business, making you more valuable to your firm
- Will provide networking opportunities with other PMPs
- Will impress your friends at cocktail parties
- Will provide potential teaching opportunities by teaching PMP classes to future PMP candidates
- Illustrates personal drive to further your credentials, knowledge, and professional abilities
- Helps to distinguish you from other project management professionals in this tough job market
If you have any questions about your career in IT, please email me at
eric@ManagerMechanics.com or find me on Twitter at @EricPBloom.
Until next time, work hard, work smart, and continue to grow.